Saturday, March 26, 2011

KLR heated seat install

After having a Corbin seat on the KLR for three years and seeing my buddy with his Sargent seat “out butt me” on trips we went on, it was time to switch. The other thing was my kids on trips would get really uncomfortable since the Corbin would compress the nerves in their legs and make us stop a lot.

I posted my corbin up on a klr forum and sold it for $255 and picked up the Sargent for $315. Not bad a bad buck for a used seat.

After a few rides to work and back (53 miles round trip) the Sargent is a keeper so I decided to get a heater element for the cold mornings. I figured I can’t go wrong since the heated grips turned out a big winner from two years ago.


The heater element is a carbon fiber type and is said to be waterproof and durable and it was designed for cars or boats and came with two elements. little did my wife know but I pulled her van seat out and surprised her and put the extra element on her seat bottom. I think I got was “what did you do again” and then a little kiss.


The first order was to make sure the seat looked almost stock and as smooth as I could when done. As you see above I used a gold paint marker to give me a reference.


Just trying to figure out the best spot for the position of my derrière to stay warm.


You and see I put the element pretty far forward compared to the picture over this one. The element has double sided tape on the outside edges and sticks to the foam well.


The two staplers we tried out for the job. The electric Stanley worked really well with 1/4 staples. Anything longer and to excess would come out the thin sections of the foam and out the vinyl. The bostitch was really powerfully and we ran it at 60psi and the safety tip all the way out so it would not shoot through the material. It was also only used in the tight sections of the seat pan where the Stanley could not fit.


First try done and a little too rippled for me.. Thanks for the help Dad.


I have to say I was not really happy with version 1.0.


For my section version I went to the craft store and picked up cotton quilt matt. I went with cotton over poly since I didn’t know or want poly melting between the vinyl and element together.


I doubled up the matt to help smooth out the seat a bit. To hold down the matt I used 3M adhesive spray and they were glued down independently of each other.

Also if you ever use the 3M spray glue, cover anything you don’t want it to get on, it’s a super pain in the ass ( no pun intended :P) to get off.


Matt glued down, smoothed out and trimmed.


version 2.0 looks way better and almost stock looking.


so now for the wiring part of the job and with all the electric add-ons it was time for a fuse box add on. Eastern beaver products was my first choice for parts. The thing I didn’t realize is they ship out of Japan and I was very lucky it showed up at all. I ordered a few days before the mess that is now Japan.


First job was toss the switch in and run the power lead and run the second wire back to the seat.


Switch is in and rubber cover installed.


I bought the three fuse setup and this is what you get minus the heat shrink.


I unbolted the factory fuse box and backed out the brown wire since it was a switched B+ and was perfect to run my seat element and gps. The fog light relay would be fused straight to the battery B+.


I did the insulation spread trick to both wires and wrapped the red wire around the brown and soldered together. Then I just used heat shrink to insulate the job.


For the terminals you need special crimper to do the job correctly. I’m sure radio shack would carry these or a tool truck like Matco or snap-on.


Terminals crimped and ready to go in.



All terminals in and looking good.


Looks pretty good and I knew the wife's label maker would come in handy..


Meh… Wish it was smoother but the reward of a warm bottom is nice and the cotton matt doesn't seem to hinder the temperature.



My little devil duck that has been on my bike almost since day one. My little daughter was pretty ticked off at me when she spotted it on the bike. I really didn’t think she would mine since she has every other color. I have to say it’s just a little thing I look at when I ride and it makes me remember there are responsibilities at home and ride smart.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Back in 2004

This is a little clip of a video my old friend Sheryl made us back in 2004. I remember the day being perfect as with the weather and everyone riding at a nice clip. The roads were central Wisconsin and we were hanging out with HSTA and the twistar meet.